Issue Brief on “Refugees, Migrants and Islamophobia”


In a briefing to the UN Security Council in April 2019, Mr. Filippo Grandi, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees has expressed his disillusionment at the harshness of language in politics, media, as well as the social media, against refugees and migrants. Mr. Grandi also stated that this is a global crisis which needs to be addressed very seriously. “To portray this as a global crisis that is not manageable, in my opinion, … is wrong,” he said. “With political will, which you represent here at the highest level, [and] with improved responses as they are enshrined in the Global Compact on Refugees, adopted by the General Assembly in December 2018, it is possible and urgent to address these crises, and you as Security Council have a critical role.”[1]

Recent years have witnessed a steep rise in the number of refugees and migrants moving across borders. According to United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), there were an estimated 40 million IDP’s, 25.4 million refugees and 3.1 million asylum seekers in 2018.[2] This rise in movement across borders has brought about several problems and has also resulted in numerous deaths and other unfortunate incidents like rape, child abuse, human smuggling and more. Different states have responded to the inflows of migrants and refugees in different ways and there have been cases where the migrants have been turned away from the borders. Extended conflicts and instability has lead to these mass movements, and due to the persistent instability, this issue remains pertinent, and, it also raises several questions about the failure of the international community to act in this regard.

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